This is “Networking Case Studies”, section 7.6 from the book Job Searching in Six Steps (v. 1.0).
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Case studies are a great way to “practice” your networking skills, which is always a wise thing to do. They teach you how to network better in a variety of situations.
Your mentor introduces you to her colleague who introduces you to a business lead (say Jane Smith), who consents to an informational interview. You send your mentor’s colleague a nice thank-you and schedule the interview. The interview is substantive, and you send Jane Smith a nice thank-you. Two weeks later you get a formal interview, which you schedule for later. Are you done for now?
You get an informational interview with a managing director, Jeff Roberts, in the boutique firm that specializes in exactly what you want to do. He asks you to coordinate with his assistant to get on his calendar. You call her to schedule the meeting. After the interview, you send Jeff Roberts a nice thank-you. Have you completed the interview etiquette?
You are late for a 1:30 interview at a company’s headquarters and by the time you get there, it’s about 1:25. You go to the security desk, but bypass the X-ray area, so they redirect you there. You get a bit huffy. You rush to the elevator and fail to keep it open for a woman who is trying to get in. When you finally make it upstairs, you are escorted to the office, and asked to wait for a moment or two. When the person with whom you are meeting finally arrives, you recognize each other: you didn’t save the elevator for her. What do you do?
You are scheduled for a second interview on a Friday, at 5 p.m. You are invited to attend the company’s weekly happy hour and afterward meet with some of the team privately for one-on-one interviews. You wear an interview suit and discover everyone else is wearing jeans. At your first interview, they had all worn business casual. “Jeans are allowed on Friday,” someone calls out. Are you appropriately dressed? What if you get called in the next Friday—what do you wear?
You are very interested in working for two companies, and fortunately, you are in final rounds with both. You receive the first offer, and feel strongly that you will accept—in fact, you know you will if you get the second offer. The deadline for the first offer is a week away. The second company calls to schedule a final round. What do you tell them?
You are in a two-on-one interview. One person is a line business manager and is taking the lead in the interview; the other person is an HR representative and does not say much. How do you conduct yourself during the interview and how do you interact with each person?
You are attending a school-sponsored networking event with your classmates and representatives from a top marketing firm. You strike up a conversation with a company person and realize that several of your classmates have gathered to either contribute to your discussion or ask their own questions of the company representative with whom you are speaking. You first finish with the conversation before turning to your classmates and acknowledging their presence. Is this good or bad networking behavior? Why?
You have accepted an invitation to attend training with the office of career services because a representative from a top company will be giving an overview of their business. At the last minute, you need to cram for an exam. In addition, you also do not feel well, so you decide not to attend. Is this is good or bad networking behavior? Why?
Here are key points to consider for each of these case studies, which will help you build upon your networking skills.
The topic is “Mentor Introductions and Follow-Up”:
The topic is “Informational Interview Follow-Up”:
The topic is “Late for an Interview”:
The topic is “Business or Business Casual Dress”:
The topic is “Multiple Offers”:
The topic is “Live Interviewing with Multiple Interviewers”:
The topic is “Being Inclusive at a Networking Event”:
The topic is “Office of Career Services Training Session”: